NameJohn A. Black
Birth1831, Morgan Co., Kentucky
Death1899, Rowan Co., Kentucky
BurialBlack-Trent Cemetery, Trent Ridge, Rowan Co., Ky
Marriage16 Mar 1854, Sandy Hook, Morgan Co., Kentucky
Birth19 Nov 1834, Tazewell Co., Virginia
Death25 Nov 1922, Rowan Co., Kentucky
BurialEldridge/Caudill Cem., Bull Fork Road
Birth13 Apr 1855, Morgan Co., Kentucky
DeathRowan Co., Kentucky
Birth29 Nov 1856, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Death2 Apr 1924, Rowan Co., Kentucky
BirthFeb 1859, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Death15 Jul 1905, Kentucky
Birth11 Mar 1861, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Death26 Jul 1917, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Birthabt 1864, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Deathabt 1898, Kentucky
Birth14 May 1866, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Death8 Jun 1929, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Birthabt 1869, Rowan Co., Kentucky
Notes for John A. Black
Double stone in Black-Trent cemetery on Trent Ridge says "John A Black 1831 - : Martha A Ridle Black 1840 - " (The death dates were never filled in. John must have died between 1890, when he was in the tax rolls, and 1900, when Martha was listed in the census as a widow. The date of 1899 is from Dewie Black, but I don’t know his source for it.)
According to John's great-grandson Omer Trent (grandson of Julius Trent and Martha Ann Black), who said he heard it from his grandmother, John A. Black was not a particularly nice fellow. He supposedly dabbled in black magic and could change at will into any shape he chose. Omer says that John was killed by his youngest son Willie while in the shape of a big black dog chasing Willie's mare. Apparently John wanted the mare and Willie didn't want to let him have it, so he made a silver bullet out of a coin to shoot the big dog that chased the mare. After he shot the dog it changed back into its human form, John Black, and died a pretty gruesome death three to five days later.
It sure would be interesting to know if there is any grain of truth in the above story. Such as, did John Black really died of a gunshot wound, and was he really shot by Willie, perhaps accidentally?
1860 Census of Rowan Co., KY, (June 10) lists this family on p. 6, #41:
J. A. Black, 29, VA; Rebecca, 25, KY; William, 5, KY; Christina, 3; KY, Margaret A., 1, KY.
1870 Census of Rowan Co., KY, Christy Creek precinct, page 4, taken June 9, lists this household as:
John Black: 38, Martha Clark: 29, Sarah Clark: 10, Samuel Clark: 8, Leander Clark: 3, Mary Clark: 4 mo., b. Jan. All born in Kentucky. (The next household is that of Pressie Petitt and Martha's twin Mary Susan Riddle. Two pages previous is a family headed by Rebecca Black, see her notes, so John was not widowed, but recently separated.)
1880 census of Rowan Co., KY, Christy Creek precinct, lists as family #418:
John A. Black, 48; Martha, 40; Samuel, 18; Leander, 12; America, 8; William, 5; Martha, 3; Louisa, 6/12, b. April. All born in Ky.
Neighboring households were Samuel Clark (at #417) and Preston Pettit (at #419). "America" in this census may be the same person as Mary in the 1870 census. Even though the age is 2 years off, the identification seems probable, since Mary doesn't appear elsewhere in this census. (Another possibility is that America daughter of Samuel Clark was listed twice in this census, once with her own family as age 9, and once with her cousins who lived next door. Howard Crose, Mary’s great-grandson through her daughter Ida Bell who married John Kegley, prefers this hypothesis, since according to the family she was never referred to as America. But that would leave the question of “where was Mary [Clark] Black?”.)
1885 tax rolls of Rowan Co. lists on p. 3:
John Black, 118 acres, neighbor Press Peditt, 1 m over 21, no children 6-20. (other categories of people not enumerated)
Notes for Rebecca Epperhart
Her death certificate records Rebecka Black, age 88 years 5 days, born 19 Nov 1834 in Taswell Co., Va, died 25 Nov 1922 in Farmers, Rowan Co., Ky, widow, father Henry Epperhard, born in Pa, mother’s maiden name Cristena Day, born in Va, cause of death broncal pneumonia, informant H. C. Black, Morehead, Ky, burial in Eldridge Graveyard.
1870 Census of Rowan Co., KY, (June 9) lists this family on p. 2, #11:
Rebecca Black, 35, farmer; William, 15; Christina, 13; Margaret, 10; David, 9; John, 6; Johnson, 4; Arminta, 1. All born in KY. (The 1870 census does not list marital status.)
1880 census of Rowan Co., Ky, Christy precinct, lists as family 416 (between Jessee Fraley and Samuel F. Clark):
Rebecca Blak, 45; David, 18; John 16; Johnson, 13; Henry, 8; Martha E., 6. All children listed as sons and daus of Rebecca. According to Dewie Black, the father of Henry and Martha E. was Isaac Newton Jones (who is household #414). They were raised as Blacks. Rebecca is marked as a widow, and also the “died this year” column is checked. I don’t know what’s going on there; she died in 1922, and her estranged husband John A. Black died in 1899.
1885 tax rolls of Rowan Co. lists on p. 4:
Rebecca Black, 50 acres, neighbor Jesse Fraly, no males over 21, 3 children 6-20. (Other categories of people not enumerated.)
1900 census of Rowan Co., Ky, Hoggtown precinct, enumerated 13 June, lists on p. 9B as family #156/157:
Black, Rebecca, 66, b. Nov 1833, Va Pa Va, widowed; Carlisle, border, 16, b. June 1883, Ky Ky Ky.
(Carlisle is Rebecca’s grandson, the son of her daughter Margaret.) The next household is that of her son Henry Clay Black.
1920 census of Rowan Co., Ky, lists Rebecca Black, grandmother, age 85, widowed, with the family of Leslie Caudill (son of her daughter Martha Ellen.) See his census notes for details.
Notes for John A. & Rebecca (Family)
Morgan Co. marriage book 1, p. 135, contains the following registry:
"I hereby certify that on the 16th day of March 1854 John A. Black of Morgan Co 24 years old born at Morgan Co Ky was married to Rebecca Epperheart of Morgan Co aged 20 years born at Tazewell Co Va and single in the presence of Wm Horten & James A. Day dated 16 March 1834 Allen Kindall"